3rd Grade Men’s v Ryde 15 July 2023 at Cintra

Result: Glebe 1 lost to Ryde 7

Half-time: Glebe 0 Ryde 3

Penalty corners: Glebe 2 (1 goal) Ryde 6 (1 goal)

Scorer: Darren French

Glebe players: Clark Foster, Chris Farrugia, Andrew Cheong, Rob Curlewis, Jamie Travis, Rob Curlewis, Jamie Travis, Cameron Johnston, Zane Goodridge, Adam Campano, Brad Goodridge, Aiden Najdzion, Ken Wark (coach).

Unavailable: Tony Wark and Paul Jowett (both overseas), Oliver Tordoff, Marley Seebacher, Sam Bagley, Simon Wark

Pre-match prediction:

We are back after a three-week break, so I expect the team will be a bit rusty, but hopefully not too rusty.

In our first-round game against Ryde on 15 April 2023, played at Ryde, we lost 1-10. Ryde was the 2022 premiership winner in the third-grade competition and has been the gun team of the third-grade competition for 4-5 years. In the 9 games Ryde has played in 2023, it has scored 35 goals and has had 11 goals scored against it, for a goal difference of +24.  Glebe has scored 11 goals, had 40 scored against it, and has a goal difference of -29. The difference between the goal difference of Glebe and Ryde, both of whom have played 9 games is 53 goals. The AI prediction is that the score should be 1-8, with the Glebe goal coming from a penalty corner scored by Brad Goodridge in the second quarter. If we can tackle early, tackle often, and try to tackle outside the defending circle I predict a 0-6 loss.

Match Report:

The game was played on a beautiful Saturday afternoon, with the sun shining, the temperature 20oC, and little wind. Glebe played very well in parts, but in quarters two and three the team went to sleep, the game plan faltered, and tackling fell away. Overall, it was a creditable performance. We beat the AI prediction by one.

The game started at a fast pace, with the ball frequently moving from one end of the field to the other. Two minutes into the game Glebe was attacking in the Ryde 22-metre area with the ball on the sideline. Andrew Cheong quickly passed the ball to Jamie Travis who carried it into the Ryde circle and found a Ryde foot.  The penalty corner push-out lacked accuracy and forced the stopper to revert to plan B, which resulted in a scrabble mid-circle before the ball fell for Will Brine, 7 metres out from the Ryde goal. Will’s shot at goal flew over the crossbar. This was an excellent scoring opportunity for Glebe.

The team was taking free hits quickly, tackling early, and playing good hockey. Cameron Johnston threw a few excellent overhead passes down the righthand sideline which opened up a few opportunities for Rob Curlewis to attack the Ryde circle. For the first 10 minutes of the first quarter, Glebe was the equal of Ryde, after which Ryde gradually gained the ascendancy and had 60-40 of the territory and 5-6 shots on the Glebe goal, which were well saved by the Glebe goalkeeper Clark Foster who had an excellent game.

Ryde was playing well, passing early, crisply, and using the full width of the field. The Glebe defence was stretched and it was only desperate, early tackling by Chris Farrugia, Brad Goodridge, Cameron Johnston and Will Brine that kept Ryde from scoring. The Glebe defence overplayed the back and side pass when it would have been better to draw the first line of defence and then crack the ball straight upfield.

Ryde had 6 penalty corners during the game and scored from one. The Glebe corner defence was excellent today. Cameron Johnston and Chris Farrugia were getting out quickly and harassing the battery making it difficult for Ryde to get a direct shot away, and Clark Foster was sticking his hand out and deflecting direct shots around the uprights.

Three minutes into the second quarter Glebe coughed up the ball 40 metres out from its own goal line. Ryde passed the ball down the left wing and then across the face of the Glebe goal where the ball was slapped past Clark Foster for a goal. The better option for the Glebe defender who was dispossessed of the ball by a couple of Ryde forwards would have been to crack the ball down the right-hand sideline when he had the chance to do so. Ryde 1, Glebe 0.

In the first 8 minutes of the second quarter, Ryde had a few more shots on goal, both conventional and tomahawk shots. Some went wide and some were stopped by Clark Foster. The Ryde forwards were always being hassled by a Glebe defender when they took a shot on the Glebe goal. Eight minutes into the second quarter Zane Goodridge dispossessed a Ryde player and fired a quick pass to Jamie Travis 15 metres from the Ryde circle in the inside right alley. Jamie sprinted into the Ryde circle, but his shot for goal went wide and there were no Glebe forwards in the circle ready to deflect the ball into the Ryde goal.

In the middle of the second quarter, Ryde penetrated the Glebe circle and was tackled by two Glebe defenders. The umpire blew a penalty stroke to Ryde, which I thought was a bit harsh, as the tackle was relatively innocuous, but that was the way the umpire called it. The ball from the penalty stroke spot was pushed by the Ryde stroke taker just inside the goal post on Clark Foster’s lefthand side. It had excellent direction, but the ball was not going particularly fast. Clarke had anticipated that the ball was going to his right and had moved in that direction. Ryde 2, Glebe 0.

Twelve minutes into the second quarter a Ryde player 10 metres inside his own half 10 metres in from the right-hand sideline passed a good overhead down the righthand sideline. Glebe defenders were caught too high and the ball was gathered in by a Ryde forward behind them. The Ryde forward got the ball under control after stopping it 3 metres above his head. It was a once-in-a-playing-lifetime stop. The chance of the Ryde player doing it again would be less than 1%.  After the Ryde player gathered the ball, he ran down the righthand sideline before crossing the ball in front of the Glebe goal where it was tapped in by a Ryde forward, Ryde 3 Glebe 0.

Ryde was playing skilful hockey, stringing 7-8 passes together and using the full width of the field. Glebe was finding it difficult to contain the Ryde team, whose forwards were also quite pacey. In the second quarter, Ryde had 65% of the territory and three times as many circle penetrations as the Glebe team. The score at half-time was Glebe 0 Ryde 3.

Ryde was on the attack from the start of the third quarter and peppered the Glebe goal with shots from the fore-stick and from the tomahawk sides. Glebe was under a lot of pressure and play was in the Glebe 22-metre area for the first 7-8 minutes of the third quarter. Brad Goodridge was tackling well and stopped many threatening Ryde raids with his flat stick tackling, with the stick out in front of his feet. Brad’s is the best tackling technique in the Club, on both the fore-stick and back-stick sides. Six minutes into the third quarter Ryde threw another overhead that found a Ryde forward in space who sprinted into the Glebe circle and passed across the face of the Glebe goal for a tap-in for another Ryde forward, Glebe 0 Ryde 4.

Five minutes into the third quarter Brad Goodridge had a right hamstring tear and came off the field. This left the team with 10 players as Adam Campano was addressing the second-grade team in the dressing sheds, as his usual practice. Adam is the second-grade team coach. The Glebe team played the last 12 minutes of the third quarter with 10 players, which made life hard for the team. Four minutes after Brad left the field the Ryde team penetrated the Glebe circle and a scramble ensued., which led to a Ryde goal Ryde 5 Glebe 0.  The Ryde attack was swarming all over the Glebe defence and Glebe was unable to clear the ball out of its 22-metre zone for long periods.

Andrew Cheong was everywhere in defence and also made some spirited attacking raids from the centre-half position. He was one of our best in today’s game.  Zane Goodridge was prominent in this phase of the game with his excellent defensive efforts. Aiden Najdzion, Jamie Travis and Rob Curlewis dropped back from the forwards to lend a hand and covered a lot of territory in chasing down Ryde attackers. Darren French tackled well and some of his hard hits down the sideline got the team out of a lot of trouble and gave it some breathing space from the Ryde bombardment. Ryde was completely dictating the tempo and direction of the game.

From one of its many raids into the Glebe circle, Ryde scored another goal to make it Ryde 6 Glebe 0.  The Ryde attacker ran from 15 metres outside the Glebe circle, through three or four would-be Glebe tacklers into the circle and hit the ball past Clarke Foster. The tackling here was poor, the tackling technique was bad, the commitment was bad, the anticipation was bad and it was the worst few minutes of the game for Glebe.

In the last six minutes of the third quarter, Ryde was awarded three penalty corners, which Glebe managed to keep out with good running out and anticipation. Ryde had 85% of the passion, 80% of the territory, its teamwork was excellent and it was using the full width of the field making it very difficult for the Glebe defence. The score at three-quarter time was Glebe 0-Ryde 6 and it looked at that time that Glebe was going to be beaten by a double-figure scoreline. Ryde finished all over the 10-player Glebe team, towards the last 5-7 minutes of the third quarter.

Glebe team coach Ken Wark must have given the Glebe team an exceptionally good motivational talk at three-quarter time as Glebe came out for the fourth quarter an energised, motivated, enthusiastic team. Adam Campano joined the team for the fourth quarter, which meant the team was back to its full complement 11 players.

Ryde started to attack at the start of the fourth quarter but the Glebe tackling was early, energetic and enthusiastic. The tackles were being made before the Ryde forwards could hit operating speed and this tactic made it much harder for the Ryde forwards to penetrate the Glebe defence. Will Brine loves to slap the ball, but in the fourth quarter he started to hit the ball and he made some excellent passes with his hit.

Seven minutes into the final quarter Aiden Najdzion, in space, received an excellent, early ball from the defence 10 metres out from the Ryde circle. He proceeded into the Ryde circle, using excellent stick work and gained a penalty corner for Glebe. Aiden pushed the ball out for the corner but the push was not accurate and the first-time hit was not possible. The ball was passed around the Ryde circle and a Glebe goal seemed on, but the ball hit a Ryde defender’s stick and Glebe’s third penalty corner was awarded.

Aiden’s push-out was perfect this time, with Will Brine affecting a good trap. Chris Farrugia laid the ball off to Darren French to his immediate left. Darren fired away a powerful push to the left-hand side of the Ryde goalkeeper, a few centimetres above the turf, just high enough to avoid the Ryde fullback’s stick, which was positioned on the turf. The ball struck the backboard, Glebe 1 Ryde 6.

For much of the fourth quarter, Glebe had 50% of the territory and its solid tackling, anticipation and enthusiasm was a transformation from the situation at the end of the third quarter. Glebe had several circle penetrations into the Ryde circle in the last five minutes of the fourth quarter and for the first time in the game, applied some pressure on the Ryde defence. Glebe were having a competitive fourth quarter.

With one-minute remaining Ryde broke down the left wing, penetrated the Glebe circle and won a penalty corner, its sixth of the game. From this penalty corner, a Ryde player flicked the ball to Clark Foster’s left into the top of the Glebe goal, Ryde 7-Glebe 1. The ball flicked by the Ryde player was not going that fast but the placement of the flick between Clark Foster and Will Brine was precise. The final score was Glebe 1 Ryde 7.

The pre-match AI estimate of the result was Glebe 1 Ryde 8, and the result of the game the team played against Ryde on 15 April 2023 was  1-10. All things considered; this was a good result for Glebe. The first and fourth quarters were very good. The second and third quarters were not so good. Congratulations team on a spirited effort against a very good third-grade team.

Next week, Saturday 22 July 2023, the game is against Northern Districts at Pennant Hills’ number 1 field, with a 12.30 pm hit-off.


Report on the Glebe v Ryde Third Grade game played 1230 hours, 15 July 2023 at Cintra Synthetic Turf, Concord.